Alan J Porter
"These were our darkest days... "
Wednesday 3.39pm. A strange feeling of present every day life, but I’m sure I’m not alone as many people are waking up to a reality that feels surreal but sadly real. I’m presently making a move from my home which is a sign of change. I’m hoping that change will bring me back eventually to the place where almost everyday I once said, it feels like being in heaven. It was the sight of the sheer beauty in Banska Bystrica, Slovakia, that surrounded the area and the people I met each day. Many people were attracted to my large painting in the Europa shopping mall. Tourists travelling around Europe would pass through the shopping mall on their short stay, then going on to Vienna or Prague. They came from the U.S.A, Canada, Australia and the Middle East and would stop fascinated by my painting, then not believing an English artist would be in a far off distant country.
I guess, everyone at this time is thinking of a place to escape to. I’m given things to see and hear, sometimes explicitly clear which has just coincided with an article I’ve read of everyone should be getting ready for the storm that’s coming. An eerie silence is here every time I pass through the my local park where hardly anyone is about. There are no sounds of children playing or seen considering it’s a school holiday. For me this is another galaxy from my childhood days that never saw me stay in doors. The town centre each day feels as though you are walking around a cemetery, as the few people you see step aside wearing masks believing you may be carrying this virus. The bank opens later than usual and one man stands waiting for the bank to open but he is complaining about our government with the incredible mistakes they are making. In the silence of the main high street, a lonely figure of a man walks up and down the centre of the road, where I’m told he’s been like this these past 30 minutes. No one approaches him, he’s harmless in his later years although a sad tragic figure. It illustrates this unworldly scene we presently live in. I’m told he’s probably on drugs, so that apparently provides an acceptable answer to his problems, but this acceptance of such a situation says, something is wrong in our society.
A parliamentary committee in the U.K. has already began the burial proceedings of our Prime Minister as they discuss and accuse him of so many mistakes he has made. This is the beginning of an inquest that highlights the Prime Ministers incompetence. The M.P.S. from all parties strongly voiced their opinions before any lockdown announcement was made, and firing questions that blew a motorway through the government defence, if they had one. Questions like, Why were thousands allowed to enter the country without having any virus checks which later proved hundreds brought this virus into our country? This sort of questioning will grow as there is an avalanche of anger from those who lost relatives needlessly. Reading this in later years people will laugh at the sheer incompetence of our government, or just think our nation had the misfortune of having a group of politicians who were totally out of their depth. Politicians are now on their holidays as metaphorically Rome burns. We will not later be hearing these words made during the Second World War, where Winston Churchill said, “These were our finest hours.” History books will record great loss of needless life and the squandering of our countrie’s wealth. These will be the words that will be recorded, “These were our darkest days.”
One of the countries top banks HSBC who does most of its business in Asia showed profits sink by 82 percent. It’s shares plunged to its lowest level since 2009 as 10 billion pounds of loans go sour and the prospect of 3,800 of its staff around the world will lose their jobs. It is said, Boris Johnson with his advisor Dominic Cummings and a small group of cabinet members make decisions without the remainder of their cabinet knowing what is going on. Fault lines everywhere. I said months ago, the retailer W.H.S. had appointed a new CEO, who in this time of crisis was clueless. Why? Because they wouldn’t accept cash. As one who had gone to this shop these last twenty years to get a lottery ticket then perhaps purchasing a book, or some art materials or a newspaper and told, SORRY NO CASH ACCEPTABLE. This in any business is writing a suicide note. Now in this uncertain time, they have seen an 85 percent drop in sales, and had to raise £166 million to shore up their finances and post a job loss of 1,900. Leadership giving such orders have made thousands on principle like myself not to enter their shop again until their ridicules rules come to an end. As in so many of my message blogs, I refer to leadership.
One leader of industry who comes to mind who may not carry popularity with everyone, is a news paper baron from Australia who cannot be ignored. He had vision, and determination and made his own decisions. He created a media business empire through sheer grit of doing what he felt was right. Having a buccaneering spirit and not being afraid to use a cutlass when needed, also attached to having a great belief in oneself. He saw opportunities and took advantage of other people’s failings, knowing where he wanted to go and taking people with this great dynamism of adventure and entrepreneurial spirit. This is the sign of any great leader. Great leaders need few advisors if any at all, as history tells. It can start with a strong forceful character that is charismatic, and follows by having a great team around you which is a recipe for success. I’m eluding to what the U.K. needs in this hour of crisis. The statistics you can keep reading do not lift your spirit when B.P., the British third biggest oil company in the world, posted a record quarterly loss of 5.2 billion pounds. Similar large oil and gas companies report plunging sales due to less energy demands.
I’ve found when you are right down and events and forces are against you, that indomitable spirit that lies within each us, can find an energy or a stimulus to physically get up in the belief and say, I’m not accepting this. With each of us it’s not the end, but a new beginning. With this virus a good strategic plan is needed, plus mastering a good track and trace procedure. Add essential good leadership and people will again find confidence and ready to fight back. We have to knock down these walls that are preventing a new and better future. Optimism is the fuel everyone wants, then confidence brings dynamism which can challenge all previous concepts that has failed our society. In my previous message blogs I wrote lists of what could be. It’s time to think different. We must not allow the young to have their spirits broken. We must not let people think they lose their homes. It’s the opposite, we must give everyone the chance to own their own home, in the way I’ve mentioned before. Those who’ve lost their business ventures against a tidal wave, must be given hope and help to create new ideas and opportunities. There is no one who can think they can sail through this crisis without the help of others. We have to build new foundations that bring peace and stability around the world because it effects every country.
The disaster of an explosion in the Lebanon is the epicentre of what could become an enormous explosion between Israel, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. Such fault lines are clearly seen. In the year 2000, I was partly given a glimpse of the future regarding this region. I was also told I could not be shown the full consequences of what might be if the present situation continued. Later that year I was drawn to cut out from a newspaper an iconic picture of Jewish children showing their camp numbers tattooed on their wrists and arms. I thought, Why am I cutting this out to save? I could never see myself painting such a scene. In 2010 I was compelled to visit a place in Slovakia, Banska Bystrica. I saw in a vision part of the newspaper cutting image, showing those same children, standing behind a barbed wire fence. Above them Palestinian children stood too in the same circumstances. I’ve told the rest of this story before in previous message blogs. What compels and motives me do what I’ve been shown? I’ve said a hundred times, all my predictions come true. It’s not about money and I don’t have a money tree. I don’t want fame, but the knowledge I’m given is a message that unless the Israel and Palestinian crisis is not resolved a disastrous explosion by nuclear weapons will ignite and engulf all those countries I’ve just mentioned and even more. That’s why I can’t stop trying to get this story out. No one would listen to Alan Turing and his team at the beginning of the second World War, with their incredulous ideas. Eventually they broke the enigma code of the enciphering machine used by the German armed forces. This endeavour shortened the world war by two years and saved an estimated 14 million lives. It appears that time and place must appear when such consequences of life are at great risk. You, the reader can believe or not believe in my thoughts, but it leaves me at times believing, I’m carrying a heavy metaphorical cross. Luckily, I have a few close friends that give me great help, almost like giving me water, when I need it. This spiritual energy is there with thousands who feel and know such changes are needed. Our children are our future.